Water damage occurs when water is let to penetrate wood flooring; this results in a dreaded condition called cupped hardwood floors. This occurs when more water is absorbed by the lumber’s unfinished underside, which causes the bottom part of every board to swell more than the top part. It is important to recognize how to repair hardwood floors to avoid damaging them further and prevent future damage. Water damage can occur any time of year, even during the winter months when the heater fails. If the water comes from an upstairs floor drain or an outdoor sump pump, it is important to isolate the area from the rest of your home for some time until you call pros at Water Damage Restoration Louisville KY. Here are a few steps to take if water enters the hardwood floors from outside:
The first thing to do is to clean up any excess water. If the damage comes from an upstairs floor drain or sump pump, you need to turn off the water supply and call a professional immediately. Once the water has been removed, and the wood flooring has been dried out, you can begin the repairs. If the damage comes from outside, you will simply replace some damaged pieces with new ones. Some common damages caused by water include warped floorboards, buckled drywall, buckled moldings, and wallpaper damage.
Discoloration: Some types of wood flooring can turn brownish over time due to exposure to water. In addition to changing its color, the piece can split and become unstable. Other times, the discoloration is just part of the floor planks and may not even require replacing the entire plank. In these cases, you may simply need to sand the planks a bit and then cover them with new planks.
Rot: Even though you may notice that the water has absolutely no effect on hardwood floors, you should still consider removing it if you have established cracks in the floor. These cracks may be caused by dripping water from a nearby bathroom sink or leaky pipes. In addition to being unsightly, rot can cause the floor to warp and bend. This will eventually occur to all wood floors and will eventually result in them needing to be replaced. If your floors are already warped or bent, you may still be able to salvage most of them without completely replacing them.
Cupping: While water itself is rarely a problem for hardwood floors, they can be particularly damaging to these floors if they are wet. Cupping can occur when water penetrates through the floor and the underside of a drywall panel. If you have absorbed some water into the panel, it will form into a crust on top of the drywall. This crust can then compact and grow into a full-fledged hole if you do not treat the affected area promptly. In addition to being unsightly, a cupped floor will also be damaged if it is used for any type of traction.
Drying: Even though wood floors dry rather slowly, there is always the chance that they could become damaged during drying. If the water has soaked into the wood and then drips down onto the floor, it can immediately begin drying. If your dry floors are exposed to rapid drying, they could become damaged by splinters or cracked areas.
Mildew and mold: If your entire house has experienced heavy water damage, you may find that mold and mildew have begun to take root. If this is the case, your only remedy is to repair all affected surfaces and rid yourself of this potentially harmful substance. Mildew can aggravate existing allergies, cause dizziness, headaches, and other respiratory problems. If you have any health issues, you should consult with your primary care doctor before beginning any mold remediation process.
Discoloration: Unfortunately, once your walls, ceiling, and floor have been stained, you cannot bleach them white again. This is why it is so important to begin removing all traces of water immediately, which will ensure that there is no chance of mildew or mold returning. You can remove discoloration with bleach, but you must do so very carefully and in accordance with safety standards set forth by your local health department. Additionally, you will probably want to consult a professional for further advice about removing black mold stains.